Beirut’s Biggest Blogger

::panel_article:: ::/panel_article::
::photo_caption::Gino Raidy::/photo_caption::
::photo_credits::Carl Halal::/photo_credits::

Gino Raidy on the rise of his blog and what comes next

By Adam Grundey
Sep 05, 2013

When Gino Raidy wrote his first blog post early in 2010 as part of an extra-credit assignment, he never expected that within three years he’d have garnered millions of hits, thousands of followers and a handful of death threats. first gained traction because of Raidy’s upfront reviews of Beirut’s clubs and restaurants, but it’s his socio-political commentary that has really catapulted him to local notoriety. Raidy says part of his remit is to unveil the “unpleasant truths” (domestic violence or homophobia, for example) he feels Lebanese society refuses to acknowledge. He also focuses on “small things” rather than big-picture political stuff. “I never wake up in the morning and think, ‘Who killed this guy?’ or ‘Who placed that bomb?’” he says. “I just want my 3G not to disappear. I want electricity in my home 24/7. I don’t want to get stuck in traffic.”

The most common excuse for Lebanon’s travails, Raidy says, is: “Conditions aren’t good right now.” But, he adds, “Since I came back 15 years ago, it’s never been good. There’s always something happening. OK, the socio-political stuff is really important, but it shouldn’t mean we have to stop civil marriage, or laws that really matter for Lebanese youth. And changing that doesn’t depend on who wins in Syria. It depends on the small things – like being able to get married to a Muslim girl without having your penis chopped off.”

Raidy recently started work on a pilot of a satirical show (along the lines of Bassem Yousef’s El Bernameg?) that he plans to air online, with a similar aim to his blog: Encouraging open dialogue. “Talking about the stuff no one dares to talk about, you know? Real social commentary,” he says. “We need a more secular, more liberal Lebanon. And I think the only way to do that is to be in people’s faces. Make them offended. Make them ask, ‘How the f*** can he write that?’ You need two extremes to find some kind of compromise. So I try to be at one extreme most of the time. I admit I’m being idealistic, but it could at least make things better.”





::rating:: ::/rating::

::artist:: ::/artist::

::actors:: ::/actors::

::director:: ::/director::

::platform:: ::/platform::

::developer:: ::/developer::

::panel_article_details:: ::/panel_article_details::
::panel_article_params:: ::/panel_article_params::
::panel_article_meta:: ::/panel_article_meta::
::panel_end:: ::/panel_end::

Latest News